The apartment, located in the Katowice district of Koszutka, where blocks of apartments from the 1960s with reinforced concrete and skeleton construction reign supreme, was arranged by architects from the bro.Kat studio. The designers brought out the raw construction material, stripped the plaster, enlarged the space, added gold accents and renovated the original wooden parquet floor, creating a functional, light-filled interior.
The interior of the apartment refers to the style of the 1950s and 1960s. The authors decided to use and make more attractive in the project the materials already found in the premises. These were primarily elements such as concrete, parquet and cast-iron radiators. To optically enlarge the apartment, they connected the living room with the kitchen by demolishing the wall between them. In addition, they removed the wall dividing the bedroom from the living room and replaced it with a mint-colored curtain. The curtain provides an opportunity to quickly enlarge the open space. The design also takes into account contrasting materials. The architects juxtaposed new furniture with antiques, of which the owner of the apartment is a big fan.
The wall dividing the bedroom and living room was replaced with a curtain
A&B: What was the main inspiration for this project?
Bogna Polanska: The main inspiration turned out to be the elements we found in the apartment. We were enthralled by the structure of concrete, which, after the first forging, we decided to expose on several structural elements. It turned out that on the columns and stringers the concrete has a very interesting texture of wood, left after the formwork. In addition, the original indentations left by Bakelite switches showed up in places. This discovery inspired us to use just such switches in the new installation. Other elements were the old cast iron radiators, as well as the beautiful parquet floor. We refurbished the rad iators and painted them in a golden color, while the parquet floor was scraped and oiled. The investor's antique restored furniture also proved to be an equally important inspiration in the development of the space.
A&B: What were the investor's expectations and needs?
Bogna Polanska: The investor expected a comfortable, cozy, functional apartment, which will house restored furniture.
The concrete structure was exposed in several structural elements
A&B: Where did the idea for such a combination of colors, patterns and materials come from?
Bogna Polanska: Wewanted to emphasize contrasts while maintaining harmony in the interior. We broke the antique, warm wood with black, new, form-saving furniture. We're talking about the bed in the bedroom or the kitchen built-in with a stainless steel top. Black also appears in accessories, such as baseboards, window sills and table legs. To emphasize the elegant form of old furniture, we decided to smuggle the golden color in simple lamps and the color scheme of radiators. A fleshy curtain in light green adds warmth to the interior.
A&B: What gave you the most satisfaction in creating this project, and what was the biggest challenge?
Bogna Polanska: The biggest challenge was the wooden parquet, but at the same time it is this element that we must also mention as a source of the greatest satisfaction. It turned out to be extremely difficult to complete and combine the new parquet with the old one. This is because the work on the floor was not limited to just sanding and oiling the floor. The investor had an old parquet floor put together, so we decided to fill in the demolition areas with it, as well as in the kitchen, where there were tiles before the renovation. We really wanted the floor to be bright. So we decided to oil it in white color. Thanks to this solution, we firstly obtained a bright floor, and secondly, we did not deprive it of its natural wood structure.